HPS203: The Human Mind
AT1: Laboratory Report Introduction - Guidelines
Laboratory Report Part 1
Brief description of assessment task Students will write an introduction to a laboratory report.
Detail of student output 1000 words (10% leeway)
Word count does NOT include title page or the title above the introduction. It does NOT include the References list if you decide to include one. In-text citations ARE included in the word count.
Grading and weighting (% total mark for unit) 25%
This task assesses your achievement of these Unit Learning Outcome(s) ULO1, ULO2, ULO3, ULO4, ULO5, ULO6 (see unit guide for full descriptions)
This task assesses your achievement of these Graduate
Learning Outcome(s) GLO1: Discipline-specific knowledge and capabilities
GLO4: Critical thinking
GLO5: Problem solving
How and when you will receive feedback on your work Students will gain feedback regarding their introduction section. This feedback should be utilised to improve the introduction that will be submitted as part of the Complete Lab Report (Assignment 2). Students will receive written feedback unless verbal feedback is requested when the assessment task is submitted. If verbal feedback is requested, written feedback will not be provided.
When and how to submit your work Due by 8:00pm AEDT Thursday 1 April 2021.
To be submitted online via the dropbox on CloudDeakin.
Why I am writing a lab report?
Good question! Laboratory reports (also known as lab reports, research reports, or journal articles) are the main way that we communicate our research findings in psychology. That is, the purpose of an APA-style laboratory (lab) report is to present original psychological research to other researchers in the field and the wider scientific community.
Communicating our research to others is an important step in the scientific process. Even if you don’t need to write lab reports in your profession, it is always useful to be able to write clearly and concisely. If you are planning to undertake fourth-year studies in Psychology (i.e., Honours or Graduate Diploma), writing a lab report is a great way to start practicing your scientific communication skills!
We will also discuss the assignment in seminars (Week 1 for AT1, Week 5 for AT2). Therefore, we strongly recommend that you attend or watch/listen to the BB Collaborate recordings of these seminars.
What is the lab report about?
Specific information about the study, and what must be included in each section of your lab report, is below. Please note that you should not cite this resource in your lab report. You must put any sentences that you use from the information below (and any of the readings) into your own words.
We will go through the lab report background in seminar 1. The seminar slides will be made available after the seminar. Due to the type of experiment we can’t give you too much information until after you have completed it.
If you want to participate in the experiment please ensure that you do this prior to your seminar in week 1.
There are THREE required readings that you MUST include in your lab report introduction. They are available to download from CloudDeakin.
Make sure that you use your OWN WORDS to describe these articles. If you are unsure how to paraphrase, please access the following resources:
Deakin guide to referencing: https://www.deakin.edu.au/students/studying/studysupport/referencing
Deakin Language and Learning Advisers, Writing Mentors, and writing feedback services: https://www.deakin.edu.au/students/studying/study-support
1) Simons, D. J., & Chabris, C. F. (1999). Gorillas in our midst: Sustained inattentional blindness for dynamic events. Perception, 28, 1059-1074. doi: 10.1068/p281059
2) Hyman, I. E. (2016). Unaware observers: The impact of inattentional blindness on walkers, drivers, and eyewitnesses. Journal of Applied Research in Memory and Cognition, 5, doi:
3) Fleck, M. S., Samei, E., & Mitroff, S. R. (2010). Generalized “satisfaction of search”:
Adverse influences on dual-target search accuracy. Journal of Experimental Psychology:
Applied, 16, 60-71. doi: 10.1037/a0018629
NOTE: References list and secondary citations
Secondary citations: What happens if you want to cite a paper that you have not read, but have just read about in one of the assigned readings? For the lab report introduction, we would like you to pretend that you have read it. In other words, do not use secondary citations.
For example, please write “Baddeley and Hitch (1974)…” instead of “Baddeley and Hitch (1974, as cited in Engle, 2002)…”
References list: No reference list is required for AT1; however, you need to provide citations throughout your introduction. You can include a reference list if you wish, but you will not receive feedback about it from your marker.
What sections do I need to include for AT1?
Title page (optional)
If you include a title page, it should include your lab report title, name, student ID, and word count. Please see the example in CloudDeakin (Lab Report Introduction template). The title page is NOT included in the word count. Your marker will not provide feedback on the title page.
Your title should summarise what your study looked at. A reader should be able to deduce exactly what your study is going to look at by just glancing at the title. It’s best to generally stick to a description of your research question (e.g. “Why do people use Facebook?”) or your topic (e.g. “Impact of diet on learning, memory and cognition”). It must include the independent and dependent variables. Have a look at a few examples of already published papers (i.e., check out your reading list).
The purpose of an introduction is to justify why the study is needed and is important. This should all lead to (and justify) the aim and hypothesis of the study. While doing this, you must provide research evidence and theoretical reasoning as you go. If it helps, you might want to visualise the introduction as an inverted triangle (?) starting broadly with the general topic, and becoming more and more targeted in what’s covered, until it logically points to a specific aim and hypothesis.
Typically the order of an introduction is as follows:
• Begin by identifying the general relevance of this area of study, and tell the reader why the topic is important to study. By this, we mean that you need to begin with some sort of introduction to the issue relating to studying automatic processes in general. Think about this question as you write this section: What is inattentional blindness and why is it important to study it?
• Your introduction then needs to focus on the relevant existing knowledge on the topic. You want to discuss the prior literature and describe what they were investigating, how they did it, what they found, and what those findings tell us.
• You end this section by leading into the current study (our study). When talking about the current study, you should mention the study’s aim and how it addresses the gaps/limitations in the prior literature that you just mentioned. This aim should logically follow on from what you have written up to that point in the Introduction, so really your aim should not be a surprising one, given the evidence and the arguments you have already presented. Your reader should think “Oh that makes sense. Of course, they are looking at that.”
• Once you have done all of this, you then outline what you expect to find (referred to as the hypotheses).
• Note that we will help you practice writing an aim and hypotheses in the Week 1 seminar.
References list (optional)
If you include References list, make sure that you list the references using APA style. If you are not sure how to do this, please read the Deakin Guide to APA-7 (available through CloudDeakin). The References list is NOT included in the word count. Your marker will not provide feedback on the References list.
1. What reference style do I need to use for this assignment?
You must use the 7th edition APA reference style for this report. Using correct APA style (6th edition) is an important requirement for this report, and errors will be penalised.
If you are unfamiliar with this reference style or need a refresher, we recommend the following writing guides that outline APA 7th edition referencing style:
Burton, L. J. (2018). An interactive approach to writing essays and research reports in psychology. Queensland: Wiley. [This book was prescribed in HPS121; there are copies available in the library, including an e-book].
Taines, C. (2015). A practical guide to writing: Psychology. NSW: McGraw-Hill. [There are copies available in the library, including an e-book]
American Psychological Association (2010). Publication manual of the American Psychological Association. Washington, DC: Author.
Deakin Guide to Referencing – APA 7 [available through CloudDeakin].
2. Do I need to use references?
Yes. You must include the THREE references described above. No reference list is required for AT1, but you can include one if you wish to. All three papers MUST be cited in your introduction.
3. Do I need to find extra papers? No! Please don’t include extra papers in your introduction. This will reduce the number of words that you have available for the three papers that we have asked you to describe.
4. What is included in the word count?
The lab report introduction must be no more than 1000 words in length (1000 words + 10% leeway). The word count does NOT include the title page, title above the introduction, or the References list (if you have included one). In-text citations ARE INCLUDED in the word count.
5. What happens if I use more than 1000 words?
Your marker will stop reading at 1000 words and you will not receive any marks for information provided after this point.
6. I need to apply for an extension. How do I do this?
Instructions of how to apply for an extension before and after the due date can found in CloudDeakin home page Tools Extension Application. Please make sure that you apply for an extension BEFORE the due date (see first page). If you apply AFTER the due date, then you will need to apply for Special Consideration instead (Tools Special Consideration). Note that all extensions are processed centrally by the School of Psychology Extension Team.
7. What happens if I submit my assignment late (past the due date)?
The Faculty of Health has strict policies around late submissions: 5% will be deducted from available marks for each day up to five days (to a maximum of -25%). Where work is submitted more than five days after the due date, the task will not be marked and the student will receive 0% for the task. 'Day' means calendar day for electronic submissions.
8. Can I get someone to look over my writing and results section?
Please note that staff cannot look at drafts or plans due to equity reasons. If you feel that you need assistance with writing skills or statistics, please contact the Division of Student Life as they have several excellent services. These include:
• Study Skills
• Writing Mentors
• Maths Mentors